Meetings are a vital part of the workplace, as they provide an opportunity for employees to collaborate and share ideas. However, many meetings seem to be more of a chore than anything else. This blog post will discuss how you can make your meetings more effective by running them in three different ways: with an agenda, using active listening skills, and following up on action items.
Running Your Meeting With an Agenda:
An agenda is a list of topics that will be covered in a meeting and can help guide the flow of the discussion. If you keep your agenda to only three items, it won’t take too long for everyone at the meeting to go through what they plan on discussing. This ensures that there isn’t much if any, wasted time during the actual meeting. You’ll also find that agendas provide several benefits: No one likes going into a meeting without having some idea of what will be discussed.
Running Your Meeting With Active Listening Skills:
Active listening is when someone demonstrates through body language, and verbal cues that they’re actively absorbing the information given by another person; closing your laptop or taking your phone out of your pocket is a clear indicator that you’re no longer listening. Being able to demonstrate active listening skills will show that you’re interested in what those around you have to say, and those sharing their thoughts with you will feel more comfortable opening up. Active listening isn’t just limited to meetings; it can be applied on an everyday basis and should be used as often as possible:
Following Up On Action Items:
Action items are a list of tasks that need to be performed by certain individuals, and they should always have deadlines. They’re easy to implement in meetings; however, many people disregard them or forget about their existence entirely.
Action items are crucial for workplace efficiency because they keep the entire team on track and let everyone know who will be responsible for what. It’s important to assign an item to only one person, so others aren’t confused about who is doing what or who has already finished their task(s). Something else that can help is providing more than one deadline, which provides some flexibility if someone misses their first deadline.
Meetings should be productive and provide each member of the team with something to take away by running your meetings in three different ways – with an agenda, active listening skills, and by following up on action items. You’ll find that the time spent in meetings will go by much more quickly while still providing everyone with something useful to take back to their desk.